I'm sure that when you think of soccer captains you visualize one in particular, maybe even several. This is because the qualities of a good captain have a great influence on the performance of the team and are known by each of the players, even the public is able to identify a good captain. However, the soccer team captain responsibilities go far beyond leadership skills.
When the team is in a more vulnerable position and the mood is not right, the captain is the one who pushes the players and encourages them to get out of that situation. A good captain is one who manages to bring the group together and get everyone moving in the same direction.
Before answering this question, it is important to highlight some qualities of a good soccer team captain to understand the role he plays:
- Has leadership skills
- Sets an example both on and off the field
- Motivates and encourages the team
- Thinks of the team above itself
If you want to know how to be a good team captain the first thing you have to do is believing in the team and thinking about its growth, as well as positively influencing the rest of the players, because the role of a good captain is to form a good team, both of players and of teammates.
It is not an easy task for a player to obtain the respect, trust, and credibility from the rest of the players on the team, and not all captains achieve this. Those who have achieved it and can be considered good captains, fulfill a series of functions and therefore have some responsibilities within the team.
Anyone who wants to be a good captain must be a good example to all his teammates. And this is not only reduced to skills and playing terms, but both inside and outside the field they must have an exemplary behavior so other players see it as an example: they must be punctual, they must strive in every training and they should always try to unify the team.
This is a great responsibility, because his actions must make each player feel represented, this function is especially important for other team members, since they see in the captain a source of motivation and inspiration that is essential for everyone to achieve their common goals.
So, to know what qualities make a good team captain is essential to identify dedication and effort both on the field and off it, because with those attributes of work and effort, the person who wears the bracelet will get to be recognized and valued by his team.
It is not always easy to control impulses and nerves on the field. When the game begins and both captains play heads or tails at the coin toss to choose which side of the field they want to star at, the game begins and so does the captain's decision making.
He will be in charge of mediating a dispute that may have arisen between two players from his own team, the opponent's team, or even involving the referee. He will also be in charge of communicating to his teammates the decisions of the referee or coach and ensuring that they are carried out.
In addition, the captain also serves as a link between the players and the team's coaching staff, so his role may sometimes resemble that of a coach. Another of the qualities of a good captain is being able to handle both defeats and victories, among many other situations, as Steven Gerrard explains in the following video.
In order to talk about the functions or qualities of a good captain, there is no better way than to look at the legends that have captained teams that have achieved high levels of success. Besides Steven, there are other captains like Carles Pujol, Raul Gonzalez, Paolo Maldini, Roy Keane, Tony Adams or Javier Zanetti that exemplify the figure of a great captain.
On the other hand, according to Mourinho's opinion, a captain does not only outstand for his leadership skills with the team, since there are different opinions on this matter and people often separate the figure of the captain from that of a leader, as José Mourinho explains in this case.
Like Mourinho, there are also coaches and players who value the figure of the captain, but not always from a leadership approach. Some mention that in the team there is a second captain, and there may even be a third or fourth one. There is no doubt that soccer is a team effort, and sometimes, it is very complicated for one person to carry all the load of a team.
When it comes to learning how to be a good team captain, besides knowing the skills and qualities that come with the title, it is equally important to consider what a captain should not do, since it can hurt the whole team. A captain can't think of himself as a better player than any teammate, let alone give orders and demand actions if he doesn’t lead by example.
Similarly, the captain does not have to be the best player on the team and, although his responsibilities are greater than those of the rest of the team, he must be consistent with his words and show respect for each one of the players.
Do you think the captain is just another player? The experiences of the players and the responsibilities of the person wearing the bracelet make it almost impossible to doubt the answer to this question. The example a captain sets for the rest of the team influences their results.
His attitude of constant effort and effective communication with his teammates should be one of his main assets. He must stay positive, encourage the team in good times and bad, and above all, he must be full of confidence and capable of transmitting it to all the players in the team.
Respect, confidence, leadership, example or cohesion are just some of the qualities of the bracelet wearer. As already mentioned, the soccer captain responsibilities can often be visible to the public, but his job goes far beyond cheering the team on in the bad moments of a game. He does not only motivate, he inspires.
A captain must generate confidence in his teammates and help each player set his goals for the common good, so they can always work towards the same objective. Exercising the leadership that accompanies the title he is given; he becomes responsible for the team.
Sometimes he will be in charge of giving instructions to the team and other times he will be the intermediary between the players and the coaching staff, so he will have to be able to communicate the coach's orders to the team and share his philosophy.
So, if you want to be a good captain you must be an example of professionalism and comradeship and think about the common good, always leading by example, so each of your teammates do it as well.
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